GOP VP Nominee Ryan Previews the First Debate
Republican Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan (R-WI) previewed the upcoming debates saying that what he and presidential nominee Mitt Romney would do is present American voters with a stark choice in November.
“We owe the country a very clear choice of a different future…We can stick with the failed policies of the four - last years for the next four years – or we can get a brighter future.”
Ryan dismissed recent polls which show the Republican ticket running behind in some key battleground states.
“This is going to be a close race. We're running against an incumbent president with incredible resources,” Ryan said.
He also responded to talk that a decisive victory in Wednesday’s debate was critical to altering the trajectory of the race going into these final five weeks.
“I don't think one event is going to make or break this campaign. President Obama is a very -- he's a very gifted speaker… I think what people are going to see who is Mitt Romney, what kind of a president he is going to be and what are the choices I have.”
One area the Republican ticket is trying to paint a clear contrast is in foreign policy, which has forced its way onto center stage in recent weeks.
“Their response was slow, it was confused, it was inconsistent,” Ryan said of the terrorist attack in Benghazi that killed four Americans, including US Ambassador Chris Stevens.
“We're seeing the ugly fruits of the Obama foreign policy unravel around the world on our TV screens. Syria, you've got 20,000 dead people. Iran is closer toward a nuclear weapon. The Middle East peace process is in shambles and we have our flags being burned all around the world. Russia is thwarting us at every stage in the process. This is a weak foreign policy with terrible results which makes us less safe,” Ryan said.
On Iran, Ryan said the difference between Mitt Romney’s position and the president’s policy in keeping nuclear weapons out of the Ayatollah’s hands is credibility.
“The president's Iran policy lacks credibility. What I mean when I say that is, the Ayatollahs in Iran, they have to make a decision to stop pursuing a nuclear weapon and pursue a peaceful resolution, but they're not doing that. And I would argue that they're not doing that because the president doesn't have credibility.”
While foreign policy has dominated headlines in recent days, the number one concern on voters’ minds continues to be the economy.
Unemployment is 8.1 percent. No president has won reelection with unemployment that high since FDR in 1940. GDP growth in the second quarter was 1.3 percent. No president has won reelection with GDP growth that low since they started measuring growth in 1930.
“Fox News Sunday” anchor Chris Wallace asked how the Republican ticket could be losing according to polls given these dire statistics.
“Given that, we're going to win this race,” Ryan responded.
Ryan said of handwringers in the GOP, who say Romney made a bold move in picking Ryan as his running mate but has since returned to playing safe, they should join the ticket on the campaign trail.
“Attend our town hall meetings. Look at how we're walking people through how we fix Medicare, how we fix Social Security, how we create jobs, how we reform the tax code, how we have an energy policy, an education policy, a trade policy.”
Ryan contended that Romney has put forward more detailed solutions to the nation’s problems than the president has and the clear contrast they present versus the president’s record these past four years will result in victory for Team Romney on election day.